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Athens Man Charged with Distribution, Possession of Child Pornography

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 15, 2011

Springfield, Ill. – An Athens, Ill., man, Evan A. Stott, 19, has been charged with one count each of distribution and possession of child pornography. The indictment alleges Stott distributed images of child pornography on Jan. 7, 2011, and that he possessed child pornography on Feb. 25, 2011. The indictment further seeks forfeiture of Stott’s computer and related equipment.

On March 8, the grand jury returned the indictment against Stott; however, the indictment had remained sealed pending Stott’s arrest and appearance in federal court. Stott was arrested on Mar. 10, and appeared before U.S. Magistrate Judge Byron G. Cudmore. Trial was scheduled for May 3, and a detention hearing was scheduled on Mar. 15. The hearing was then continued to tomorrow, Mar. 16, to allow additional time for the parties to produce further information regarding the issue of detention.

The charges were investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Gregory M. Gilmore.

If convicted, the statutory penalty for distribution of child pornography is a mandatory minimum five years to 20 years in prison. For possession of child pornography, the penalty is up to 10 years in prison. Each of the offenses carry terms of supervised release of up to life following any term of imprisonment.

Members of the public are reminded that an indictment is merely an accusation; the defendant is presumed innocent unless proven guilty.

The case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice. Led by U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS), Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to better locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the Internet as well as to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.projectsafechildhood.gov.

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